Friday, September 23, 2011

The Perfect Lunch Pasta Dish

My daughter got her first job outside of my company http://www.purecountrypetboutique.com/ as a hostess/waitress at ihop. Kind of ironic isn't it? The Celiac Gluten Free Teenager working at a pancake place. There is absolutely NOTHING she can eat at ihop. Everything is cross contaminated. Even a salad would end up making her sick, break out, and mentally unstable. She loves her job though, we just have to get better at planning lunches for her so that she doesn't come home and stuff her face with the latest baked good coming out of my oven at 3 in the afternoon. I am making her a pasta salad. This will get her through and is a much lighter healthier alternative to eating a pan of brownies when she walks in the door.
This pasta turned out amazing, I hope you like it!

INGREDIENTS:
1 red pepper sliced into thin baton shapes.
1 pound gluten free pasta (any shape) Homemade or boxed
1/2 bunch cilantro
½ bunch parsley
1 small bunch scallions
3-4 cloves garlic
¼-½ cup olive oil
Juice of ½ lemon
¼ grated Parmesan
Salt and freshly ground pepper
Note: You can also add artichokes and slices of pickled garlic. You don't have to, but you can and it adds a lot of flavor. I didn't include it in the recipe because not everyone has pickled garlic in their pantry. It is a staple for me.
Slice and de-seed the red pepper and set aside.

Cook the pasta in a large pot of salted water until al dente. I used Quinoa pasta garden pagodas.
Cooked 6 minutes in boiling salted water and then reserved 1 cup of pasta water before draining.
To make the sauce, combine the cilantro, parsley, scallions, garlic, and ¼ cup olive oil in a food processor. Blend until a paste forms.

Add the lemon juice and Parmesan and season with salt and pepper. Taste and add more garlic, lemon juice, olive oil, Parmesan, salt, and/or pepper as needed. Add a dash of the pasta water and blend until smooth. Toss with the pasta and red pepper and add more pasta water as needed.
Serve with additional Parmesan on top.

Keep chilled in fridge until you serve. I broke up the pasta into 4 servings. One she ate in the picture above. The rest I put in air tight containers and this will be her lunch for the next couple days. She said she would eat it for dinner too if I let her.

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